Smokey Shrimp Burgers with Fried Oysters | A Thought For Food

It’s hard not to feel a little left out this time of year. You get invited to a barbecue and you know that there will be very little for you to eat. Potato salad is a wonderful thing, but it’s not going to soak up the bottle of rosé you’ll consume over the course of the afternoon. And, look, I totally get it. Burgers and hot dogs and chicken are cheap and easy to throw together. Some grilled veggies will make their way into the mix to give the vegetarians their fix. But most people are nervous about serving fish to a crowd. How do you prepare it? Will people eat it? Is it going to weird folks out?

I think most will get behind any kind of burger. On a hot summer day, who doesn’t want to chow down on a big, messy sandwich while swigging from an ice cold beer? Which brings me to my point: seafood burgers are just as wonderful as the beef variety. Take, for instance, this shrimp burger. The patty is a combination of shrimp, grated apple and onion, some salt and pepper, and, for smokiness, a couple teaspoons of Chipotle Tabasco.

One might say I went a little overboard with the fried oysters, avocado, and mayo. But, really, when it comes to burgers, can you really go too far? No. The answer is no. Always.

Smokey Shrimp Burgers with Fried Oysters | A Thought For Food

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Tabasco. Over the course of the year, I will be creating recipes featuring the Tabasco Family of Flavors and this is the first of those posts. All opinions expressed on my site are my own.

You can check out my recap from my trip to visiting Tabasco here.

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  • May 18, 2015 - 7:46 am

    Beth - How can anyone say no to a burger?! YUM!ReplyCancel

  • May 18, 2015 - 8:13 am

    Michelle @ A Dish of Daily Life - These look absolutely amazing…definitely up our alley! Can’t wait to try them! Pinned them so I can add them to the menu plan!ReplyCancel

  • May 18, 2015 - 8:37 am

    Liz @ The Lemon Bowl - I would pay big money for this gorgeous burger!!ReplyCancel

  • May 18, 2015 - 9:38 am

    Heidi @foodiecrush - I’d have to agree, you really can’t go too far with a burger. Chipotle Tabasco is a serious flavor maker. Looks stunning.ReplyCancel

  • May 18, 2015 - 2:44 pm

    Ryan Smith | A Polished Palate - Loving the looks of that burger! The recipe sounds delicious!ReplyCancel

  • May 18, 2015 - 3:26 pm

    brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles - This looks heavenly. Heavenly!! I can only imagine how wonderful the chipotle Tabasco is in this shrimp burger!ReplyCancel

  • May 18, 2015 - 4:46 pm

    Patricia @ Grab a Plate - This burger has definitely caught my attention – yum! Looks fabulous!ReplyCancel

  • May 18, 2015 - 10:53 pm

    Kristen - Holy cow, Brian – this burger is amazing! I love every single component!ReplyCancel

  • May 19, 2015 - 3:55 pm

    Kim - Today's Creative Life - This sounds delicious! I love smoked shrimp and I love oysters!ReplyCancel

  • May 20, 2015 - 6:16 pm

    todd wagner - I agree, seafood burgers are SO underrated!! I can’t wait to see what else you do with tabasco – I kinda have an addiction to the stuff :)ReplyCancel

  • May 21, 2015 - 3:56 pm

    Paula - bell'alimento - Holy cow Brian, those look ah-mazing.ReplyCancel

  • May 23, 2015 - 7:55 am

    Currently Crushing On. | How Sweet It Is - […] shrimp burger with fried oysters. […]ReplyCancel

  • May 23, 2015 - 8:44 am

    Tieghan - First this burger is insane!! Love the textures and flavors!! Second, the new site look so great!! Congrats!! :)ReplyCancel

  • May 27, 2015 - 4:19 pm

    Liren - Brian, you would have ALL the meat eaters happily ditch their beef burgers to line up for this at any barbecue! The layers of flavor and crunch are just irresistible!ReplyCancel

  • May 31, 2015 - 3:00 pm

    Nik@ABrownTable - I loved your photos from the trip to the Tabasco company, it looked like a lot of fun. Shrimp and oysters, it’s like a fancy Po’boy of sorts, love it. On a side note, your new portfolio is such an inspiration :)ReplyCancel

  • June 2, 2015 - 9:29 pm

    Meredith - You absolutely did not go overboard with the fried oysters! Tim says he’s got a bottle of Sancerre with your name on it!ReplyCancel

  • June 11, 2015 - 8:42 am

    Unical - This is absolutely amazing!ReplyCancel

  • June 16, 2015 - 11:39 pm

    Denise - I keep thinking I need to learn to make shrimp burgers as we cut back on meat. This recipe has just reconfirmed that I need to try it out asap! Sounds amazing, and I love all the texture richness of the recipe.ReplyCancel

  • June 29, 2015 - 8:54 am

    Watermelon Shrub Spritzer » A Thought For Food - […] You can check out my recap from my trip to visiting Tabasco here and my recipe for Smokey Shrimp Burgers here. […]ReplyCancel

  • July 22, 2015 - 1:17 pm

    Charred Corn and Mango Salsa + Plantain Chips » A Thought For Food - […] can check out my recap from my trip to visiting Tabasco here and my recipes for Smokey Shrimp Burgers and a Watermelon Shrub […]ReplyCancel

Garlicky Broccoli Rabe with Almonds and Fried Capers | A Thought For Food

I attribute my tolerance for bitter foods with my early experiences eating broccoli rabe.  Served next to some chicken or tossed with pasta and cheese, it was one of the vegetables I requested the most when we went to the store. There’s something to be said for its abnormal shape, which, compared to the peas and carrots that often graced our table, seemed exotic to us.  But it was the flavor that stuck with me. Even after it was cooked in olive oil and garlic and seasoned with salt, the sharp bite remained prevalent. Those are the foods that I love… where the flavors change as you consume it. It’s why I so enjoy things like dandelion greens or arugula. Unlike other greens, these have a lasting impression.

And, yet, it’s been years since I’ve prepared broccoli rabe. It wasn’t until I opened Tara’s fabulous book, Seven Spoons, and came across her version (which paired it with a delicious bagna cauda, a buttery, garlicky, anchovy sauce) that I was inspired to pick some up. While I sat at our table, stabbing at spears of rabbini, I posted a prep shot on Instagram and Tara and I bonded over our mutual appreciation for bitter greens. It’s nice to know that we could connect over this dish. I have a feeling others could fall for this dish, even with the subtle, lingering bite.

Garlicky Broccoli Rabe with Almonds and Fried Capers | A Thought For FoodGarlicky Broccoli Rabe with Almonds and Fried Capers | A Thought For FoodGarlicky Broccoli Rabe with Almonds and Fried Capers | A Thought For FoodGarlicky Broccoli Rabe with Almonds and Fried Capers | A Thought For FoodBROCCOLI RABE-7188Garlicky Broccoli Rabe with Almonds and Fried Capers | A Thought For FoodBROCCOLI RABE-7321 copy

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  • May 11, 2015 - 9:54 am

    naomi - I love this beautiful dish and I will definitely have to check our her book. Its bound to befall of great recipes! And gorgeous photos!ReplyCancel

  • May 11, 2015 - 11:49 am

    Liren - I love the balance in this dish, Brian. The salty capers is so smart to temper the bitterness, which I don’t mind, either. Lovely!ReplyCancel

  • May 11, 2015 - 12:24 pm

    Tara O'Brady + Seven Spoons - So happy to have Brian on board with the love of bitter flavours. My book’s broccoli rabe with bagna cauda — a bit salty, sweet, and the type of food I crave.ReplyCancel

  • May 11, 2015 - 12:26 pm

    Meredith - I have a constant love affair of bitter greens — dandelion, mustard, you name it! This dish looks amazing and those capers have me wanting more!ReplyCancel

  • May 11, 2015 - 6:34 pm

    Patricia @ Grab a Plate - Ooo I love bitter greens, too. My parents always served different types when I was growing up. I imaging this tastes amazing with the capers – nice addition! Yum!ReplyCancel

  • May 11, 2015 - 9:20 pm

    Heidi @foodiecrush - Capers and garlicky bitter greens are a favorite all year round but man, what a way to ring in spring.ReplyCancel

  • May 12, 2015 - 6:57 am

    Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Health - i have not had broccoli rabe but i love bitter flavored foods in the idea of frying capers.ReplyCancel

  • May 12, 2015 - 8:42 pm

    Brandon @ Kitchen Konfidence - Wow, this looks so simple and delicious. I am definitely giving this recipe a try!!ReplyCancel

  • May 13, 2015 - 10:58 am

    Paula - bell'alimento - I just want to face plant into this bowl! Swoon.ReplyCancel

  • May 16, 2015 - 7:14 am

    Currently Crushing On. | How Sweet It Is - […] garlicky broccoli rabe. i can do […]ReplyCancel

  • May 16, 2015 - 7:09 pm

    Kari - That looks delicious! It would go great with a white fish for dinner.

  • May 17, 2015 - 10:23 pm

    Meal Planning Monday | Paleo Baker - […] This Garlicky Broccoli Rabe would make a great side dish for dinner tonight […]ReplyCancel

  • May 20, 2015 - 8:17 pm

    Denise - I am so behind on blog reading due to work travels – that I have a feeling I will be loitering around here tonight. WOW. Totally digging on this recipe, and it is so “us”. To be honest, I almost licked those little salty capers. Yum!ReplyCancel

  • May 25, 2015 - 7:14 pm

    Austin - this looks delicious! despite all the fans, i’ve yet to cook broccoli rabe – and yes to salty capers all the way.ReplyCancel

  • June 10, 2015 - 10:28 am

    serwis - This is awesome recipe! I love broccoli and I really like this recipe :)ReplyCancel

herb and za

Some quick thoughts and links to start the week:

1. Two beautifully written books are a must for fans of food memoirs. Over the weekend, I finished Three Many Cooks by my friends Pam, Maggy and Sharon. It’s a gorgeous look at the role that food has played in their lives. These stories, all of them written with honesty and a generous dose of humor, have given me so much insight into their backgrounds. Similarly, Ashley Rodriguez’s book, Date Night In, shows that cooking and eating (and drinking) can strengthen one’s relationship with their partner. Each contain wonderful recipes that reflect their passion for cooking for the ones they love.

2. For some non-food related reading, I highly recommend last year’s The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace. Growing up in a predominantly white, middle-class neighborhood, my knowledge of what it was like living in the poorer areas of New Jersey came from what I saw on the news. This book paints a very detailed portrait of a young man from Orange, NJ, who would ultimately attended Yale, though it’s about so much more than that. In addition, there’s an episode of This American Life and a New York Times article that cover similar topics. Both are worth checking out.

3. This article about people allowing dogs to sleep in bed with them made me chuckle. This our life.

4. Can’t stop listening to this song. And this song.

5. We’re hooked on the new Netflix program, Chef’s Table. I’m ready to make reservations at all of these.

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  • May 4, 2015 - 9:01 am

    Julie @ Willow Bird Baking - These falafel look delicious. And thanks for the book recs! I need some new reading.ReplyCancel

  • May 4, 2015 - 12:04 pm

    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles - GORGEOUS falafel. Now I’m wishing we had Netflix!!!ReplyCancel

  • May 4, 2015 - 9:28 pm

    Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet - We love falafel! This sounds amazing!ReplyCancel

  • May 4, 2015 - 10:46 pm

    Tieghan - Such incredible delicious looking falafel!! Totally love this post! Also, thanks for all the recommendations!!ReplyCancel

  • May 5, 2015 - 9:51 am

    Deborah - I have never made falafel at home, but this has me realizing what a tragedy that is!ReplyCancel

  • May 5, 2015 - 1:58 pm

    Helene - Hi,
    lovely recipe and lovely photo’s you have here. What camera or objectives has been used for these post?
    And what camera and objectives would you usually prefer for food photographers (and in that case upcoming food photographers)

    Love from HeleneReplyCancel

  • May 5, 2015 - 2:07 pm

    Heidi @foodiecrush - I’ve yet to see Chef’s Table, but it is on the list. As are making falafel. I’m digging your addition of zaatar. Hope you guys are well!ReplyCancel

  • May 5, 2015 - 10:22 pm

    Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Health - i have been wanting to watch Chef’s Table, need to get on that.ReplyCancel

  • May 6, 2015 - 6:38 pm

    Liren - Brian, how did you know I’ve been craving falafels? Seriously.

    Ok, I need to get on the Chef’s Table bandwagon. Is it the weekend yet? I can’t wait to park it in front of the tv and get started!ReplyCancel

  • May 7, 2015 - 6:25 am

    Joanne - Note to self: WATCH CHEF’S TABLE. Preferably while eating a huge bowl of these falafel. They look so good.ReplyCancel

  • May 12, 2015 - 4:00 am

    Links I Love #59Whatever Works - […] Les falafels c’est si bon, et vraiment pas (trop) compliqué à faire chez soi, voici donc une… […]ReplyCancel

  • May 12, 2015 - 2:57 pm

    Jeanette - Any substitutions for chickpea flour?ReplyCancel

  • May 13, 2015 - 11:09 am

    Paula - bell'alimento - I totally see a Falafel Waffle happening with this ; ) Blame Meredith.ReplyCancel

  • May 20, 2015 - 8:23 pm

    Denise - I will have to tried your baked version of falafel. I have tried making once by frying and it just did not work, plus I would rather not have the fat. The mint is the perfect addition – I do the same thing, I just ruin it when frying!

    We just started Chef Table – LOVE.ReplyCancel